YouTube wants to quickly increase the number of short videos “Shorts” on its platform in order to better compete with TikTok. To aid that effort, the company on Thursday launched a new creator tool that can turn existing YouTube videos into Shorts in a fraction of the time.
The update is now available in YouTube’s mobile app, allowing video creators to easily select a segment of any video they’ve uploaded before, and then publish that segment as YouTube Shorts content.
The company has turned user-uploaded videos under 60 seconds into Shorts videos, even if they were originally uploaded as standard YouTube videos. Now, YouTube wants creators to take a more active role in helping build the Shorts content library further, with the launch of this new tool that lets them cut interesting clips from their long videos.
The move could signal YouTube parent Google’s concerns about TikTok’s dominance of short-form videos. Clearly, it doesn’t think the organic growth of YouTube’s Shorts content library through new original content uploads is enough to compete.
Instead, YouTube has been relying on leveraging its existing long-form content to create more short-form content. For example, in April, YouTube announced that any public YouTube video could be “remixed” into YouTube Shorts unless the creator opted out.
At the same time, the new tools put at least some power back in the hands of the creators themselves. The company explained that the updated mobile app allows creators to select sections of their videos up to 60 seconds in length and turn them into Shorts content using the same editing tools they’re familiar with in the app.
If their selection of content is less than 60 seconds, they can use the Shorts camera to shoot more video, or they can add a gallery video to complete their 60 seconds of Shorts content. Creators may be motivated to use the tool as a means of generating interest in their long-form video content, as YouTube notes that Shorts created using VOD (video-on-demand) content will automatically link to the original content.
YouTube has been touting Shorts’ ability to drive views for creators’ long-form video content as part of a trend it calls “the rise of multi-format creators.” In June, the company said Shorts had surpassed 1.5 billion monthly logged-in users, but only anecdotal data suggested Shorts helped grow key metrics like hours watched or subscribers.
At the same time, the fact that YouTube is so reliant on its existing long-form content to build its library of Shorts suggests that creators may have a lack of interest in filming original Shorts; or it could mean that YouTube still ultimately sees more potential as a long-form platform — But it envisions Shorts videos as a marketing mechanism to drive views for its better-monetized content.
The new Shorts authoring feature is rolling out to the YouTube mobile app on iOS and Android devices starting Thursday, the company said.
If you like our news and you want to be the first to get notifications of the latest news, then follow us on Twitter and Facebook page and join our Telegram channel. Also, you can follow us on Google News for regular updates.